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Sunday, October 22, 2017

Why Jumping Castles should be Banned from Existence




An event took place at school yesterday and I spent my Saturday afternoon and evening on crowd control duty in a rather small room, with 200 buoyant children who were in more than avid attendance. 

After it all finished, I endured a long drive, swerving around indiscriminate marsupials, who appeared to be on a suicidal mission, in the dark and ominous dampness. I recalled Wolf Creek and its antagonist many times during the journey. 

 I arrived home at 10 pm in a quite exhausted state. 

All I wished to do today was to relax… sans over-excited, screaming children. I’d had enough of under elevens.

After much passionate dialogue, Scotto and I eventually resolved we’d give Mel Gibson’s pub another go for lunch because the view is so attractive and we thus set off.

It was pleasing to see that the establishment had removed the offensive smoked chicken from the menu and I hoped my passive protest had not a small influence on that decision and looked forward to a decent meal.

What was not so pleasing, however, was largely influenced by this malevolent, foreboding structure set up in the middle of the fucking beer garden.

Fucking Jumping Castle


Nothing, and I mean NOTHING sets off exuberant shrieks, anguished laments resulting from two toddlers inopportunely smashing their heads together, or outraged tantrums with kids running off bawling in ear-piercing howls that communicate threats such as, ‘I’m telling on you to my mother, Corey!!!’ than a jumping castle.

A jumping castle in a beer garden is an abomination of the highest of highest orders.

Nevertheless, we had a table and we were settled.

Meanwhile, settled at the table beside us, were two mothers and three children who were thoroughly enjoying their plates of chicken nuggets and chips.

The three children, stimulated by the unnatural additives in their soft drinks, began to chant in raucous voices, “Yum, yum, eat my bum!”

I have no answer as to why they began this chant but suspect they liked the sound of the word ‘bum’ as well as the fact that ‘bum’ is rhymed with ‘yum’.

This was at first amusing I suppose but it went on for a quite some time, relentlessly actually, until one of the mothers finally intervened. “That is enough of the ‘bum’ word," she entreated the group gently. "Stop."

Silence ensued for about ten seconds until one of the more creative little boys began to chant, “Yum, yum, eat my doodle!”

Naturally, this threw me into a fit of immature, hysterical laughter. Scotto was dissolved in an infantile paroxysm of giggles. The mother, however, who was understandably mortified, began to scold the small boy who then began to inconsolably bawl his heart out while I was attempting to eat my bruschetta with some semblance of placidity.


I do love children but I also hope my own grown up children are practising safe sex for the time being.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

The Mulberries



My father gave me a large bowl of home grown mulberries last week and I took a handful to school as a snack.

I was thrilled as I haven’t eaten mulberries since I was ten years of age and I love to receive free, organic produce.

I nibbled on them as I strolled around the playground whilst on duty.

“Mrs Poinker, your teeth are pink,” a well-meaning little grade one student, hanging upside down on the monkey bars, stoically informed me.

“Your teeth are blue,” I countered, observing the stain from a blue icy pole encircling the cheeky inverted mouth.

“But your teeth look scary,” the small creature replied, dropping to the soft fall and moving in for a closer inspection.

A collection of inquisitive, tiny children gathered around me, staring at my teeth in horrified fascination.

As soon as the bell went I raced into the bathroom to inspect the damage. All my teeth were indeed heavily stained but one particular tooth, my fake front tooth, looked as if it had been soaking in concentrated, heavy duty Red Dye 40 for at least a few decades.

I was terrified. What if the material the fake tooth was made of had absorbed the juice and I was destined to live the rest of my life with one bright magenta-coloured front tooth.

I swished water in a passionate and relentless manner for the rest of the day and by the time I arrived home it had faded to a rose pink.

By evening it had diminished to a romantic pastel.

Only a vestige of pink tinge remained in the morning.

That is the last time I ever eat mulberries.

But what else can I do with them? Tie dye t-shirts? Batik Printing?

P.S. Of late I have become utterly obsessed with Jane Austen. I have begun a separate blog site called Jane Aussie Austen where I intend to write Austenesque posts about my every day life. Dear Reader, I would never inflict this on you without your permission, however if you would like to follow it here is the link...

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Happy Birthday Mother!



It’s my mother’s birthday on Tuesday so Scotto and I called in before taking her and Dad out for lunch today.

“Here’s your present,” I announced, handing over a card/voucher with an accompanying scented candle.

“Oh I can’t use scented candles,” she replied. “They aggravate my sinuses, but I’ll put this in the cupboard and you can have the one you gave me for last Christmas back. It’s in the same cupboard.”

“But it’s a special soy candle,” I persevered. “I bought it especially with your sinuses in mind.”

She went off to swap the candles.

So now I have a new candle and it’s not my birthday

We arrived at the café of my dear mother’s choice and I was in a bit of a bad mood because the café was facing a car park and I hate eating in places with no atmosphere. I like a bit of beach… or at least a water feature.

There WAS the atmosphere of hydrocarbons, nitrogen oxide, carbon monoxide, sulphur dioxide and other hazardous greenhouse gases, I suppose, and also Mum insisted the food was top notch so I decided to be accepting of the fact that it was her birthday not mine and to stop being a selfish biartch.

My mother is strange with her choice of eateries. Once, when we were visiting, she suggested Sunday breakfast at a certain café. When we arrived via the GPS we discovered the café was inside a major shopping centre. Nothing else was open; just a sad little café with no other patrons but ourselves and a view of the roller door of a closed Sportsgirl store.

Another time she suggested lunch at a restaurant attached to a theatre in the middle of nowhere. We arrived at the restaurant and as there was no theatrical production going on and it was completely vacated, we were the only ones there. It too, faced a car park.


So, in great disappointment, but with a hopeful demeanour, I walked to the counter to order a calming, alcoholic, revitalising round of drinks in order to save me from this new affront to my sensibilities.

“I’m sorry,” said the lady serving, “you can’t order alcoholic drinks without ordering food.”

I was perplexed in the extreme. “But we ARE going to order food,” I stammered. “We just want a drink while we’re looking at the menu.”

She shook her head gravely. “You have to order the drink WITH the food.”

I felt my blood pressure edge up and I’m sure my ears went red.

I’m ashamed of myself because I’m sorry to say I gave her a decidedly fake smile when I said, “Allllllllrighty then,” and strutted off in a shit.

When we’d finally ordered and had our beverages in front of us, Dad began talking about how they’d had to purchase water for their empty rainwater tanks the previous week. The mountain hadn’t had rain for ages and everyone was running out of water.

“Why didn’t you just fill up the tanks with the hose?” I asked.

Dad just stared at me... then he got the joke. Either that or he was humouring me, I'm not sure.

To tell the truth, my mother has always asserted, most strenuously, that my father is eccentric, but I am now suspecting they are both quite peculiar.

Thank God it doesn’t run in the family.

On a cheerier note, we gave two of our chickens a warm bath today due to their poo-encrusted bottoms.

Hodor

Ygritte


They are walking with a much easier gait now!

So tell me, do you have any eccentric people in your family?



It was definitely an occasion for surgical gloves.

Monday, October 2, 2017

I Don't Wanna Be a Pirate!



I finally bit the bullet and signed up to Ancestry DNA historical records and wow… just wow.

I traced all my dad’s great grandfathers back to the 1500s and came to a dead end at Nicholas De Venoix, who was born in Normandy, France, so that explains my penchant for cheese and wine and stripey t-shirts.




Scotto has declared since learning of this marital affiliation, 

"I shall be taunting people a second time and I shall cease to take showers and continue to speak in an outraaaageous accent."

My mother’s ancestral side is a much more mysterious and delightfully scandalous story of which I have made a quite insanely titillating and intriguing discovery… but I can’t tell you about it or not only will I be disinherited but I may wake up in my bed with the head of a Chihuahua on my pillow case.

Let’s just say that DNA reveals all.

Speaking of insane things, one of my great, great grannies died in an insane asylum in London, poor thing.

What… ? Runs in the family?

One of my great, great, great grandfathers was sentenced to 6 months hard labour at the Old Bailey for fraud and his name was Silas.

Finally there is someone exciting in the family history.

I’m calling my next pet, Silas.

I also had a great grandfather named, Solomon Catt and naturally my next cat will be called Solomon.

My great, great grandfather, John, was “heavily tattooed, wore an earring and a large beard, had worked on ships sailing the world, was very grumpy and scared all the children silly” and we suspect he was a pirate which, even though it’s no claim to fame, is thrilling all the same.

It was a relief to note that the majority of the grandparents lived to a ripe old age, even though one set spawned twenty children. One grandfather lived to one hundred so the good news is I’ll hopefully be around to annoy you for a little while yet.


 Unless of course, one of my ancestors decides they don't like my blog and tries to kill me from the 'other side' which I fear might be actually happening.

I walked out to feed the chickens today and saw this impaled on the chair I usually sit in.


I know... glamorous photo...

Seems a bit pointed (no pun intended).


So until we meet again… au revoir monsieurs and madames.
But tell me... got any family secrets?

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Why I'm Going to Lie About My Age!



It’s my birthday on Monday and I’ve noticed that lately, when I tell people I’m almost 57 years old, there are no gasps of, “Oh no! You couldn’t possibly be! You don’t look anywhere near that old, Pinky.”
 
I wait for it. But the shock and astonishment never seems to fall upon their visage.

I stare at the people in question in concentrated silence until they begin to shuffle their feet in discomfort.

I fix them with my beady eyes, searching their face for some kind of bewildered admiration.

After a while, I realise with a stunned and disappointed insight, they think I actually look my age.

So it's been decided, I'm going to start telling people I’m 67. 

Surely that should get me some compliments?

I bought my own birthday present yesterday. Scotto will reimburse me and it will be his present to me. He’s not allowed to know what it is because one of us has to be surprised on the day.

“I hope I like what you got me for my birthday,” I excitedly whispered in his ear as we snuggled in front of the telly last night. “I hope you didn’t spend too much money on me, darling.”

He looked confused for a few minutes but then light dawned on his face. He played along.

"Is it something I can wear or something I can eat?" I enquired coquettishly. "Can I shake the box? Pleassse?"

“Don’t look at the other white package on the table,” he cautioned, wagging his finger at me. “There’s another birthday surprise in it.”

“Do you mean the present from the kids?” I scoffed. “But I already know what that is, silly! I told you to tell them what I wanted!”
A weary expression spread over his face. I could see he wasn’t going to play my game anymore.

To be truthful, I have a strong suspicion Scotto is attempting to kill me before I reach my next milestone.

Remember the mountain’s Scarecrow Festival I wrote about last year? Well this year Scotto entered his own scarecrow to promote his computer business in the community.

I was leaving for work last week and as I opened the front door, I caught this in my peripheral vision.



I jumped out of my skin, swearing loudly. 

I’d thought it was a big yellow carrot-creature come to slit my throat.

Cursing Scotto under my breath, I bent down to pour Whiskers in the cat bowl and endured a second coronary event when I stood up and spotted the behemoth five seconds later; then again, as I pulled out of the driveway and glimpsed the malevolent monster, towering menacingly at the front door.



I was very glad when Scotto took the terrifying thing away for display.

Yesterday, as I was taking a box of wine bottles out to the bin, I rounded the corner and swiftly dropped said box, smashing glass everywhere when I sighted this freak hanging over the fence leering at me.



I swear Scotto is planting the evil stuffed thing in odd places in an ill-disguised endeavour to murder me via a devastating cardiac arrest. 

If I am found dead in bed with this thing next to me on Monday morning then you will know who caused my sudden demise.

But you’ll be pleased to hear I am still alive at the moment and getting very excited about the impending B day even though I will be turning the magic 67.
I know! How the years fly by.

Feel free to comment on how you can't believe I'm 67.


Saturday, September 16, 2017

What the Dickens? It's School Holidays!



It was with carrying a not desolate and bleak, destitute heart in which I departed my dear place of industrious labour yesterday and set afoot on my extensive and arduous journey back to my soothing and familiar home where my dear husband sat in the dewy, green, back garden, anxiously awaiting my appearance and wearing a ponderous and expectant visage with many a gentle sigh forthcoming from his broad chest; but with a happy one.

If you haven’t guessed, I’ve been listening to Charles Dickens’ David Copperfield on audio all week.
NB: the Dickens' character NOT the magician.
I shall carry on with a similar style of rubbish for the remainder of my post.

My dear reader, I can not for the life of me, express what an immense relief it is to be finally freed of the stifling and oppressive establishment that is school life. Not only shall I be liberated from the dreadful clamour of the beseeching and regimented bleating of the alarm clock at a time before the cock crows every morn, but I shall be enabled to slumber to my heart’s content on each and every morning for the next thirteen days plus one.

No more will one such self be mandated to travel out of one’s way to visit Aldi to shop for nourishing substances for one’s pets on an already gruelling and toilsome excursion on return to one’s abode, but one shall be able to visit the said store on a whimsy, a mere whimsy, my dear fellow.

There shall be joy and merriment celebrated on every minute ticked by the clock, on every whisper in the breeze as I sup on my port wine in the fire lit parlour; on every glittering view I glimpse from my chaise lounge as I repose in a reflective introspect whilst gathering my weary thoughts, cupping my steaming mug in my withered hands.

The long forgotten night terrors revitalising hideous recollections of the tedious marking of badly spelled persuasive essays, the horrors of an all-day soccer gala day, the utter dreadfulness of a disconcerting and strenuous school camp… will slowly dissolve into a faded and indistinct memory.

In short, my dear reader, the school term has at last come to a hasty and propitious end and my future lies like a glittering jewel in the crown of a great monarch with all the promise of a something one might only dream of on the sweetest and most headiest of nights whilst drowning in the aromas of all the night flowers blooming in the most intoxicating and reckless of manner.


And so I leave you, perhaps perplexed as to what you just read, perhaps quietly snickering at the jumbled and disorderly mind that is Pinky Poinker, perhaps quietly nodding in mournful pity at the wonders of a truly mad and tangled mind. Whatever, sir, I wish you a good and happy life and a very nice school holiday.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Pinky's Restaurant Review!



I look forward to Saturday because Scotto takes me out for lunch.

It’s like ‘date night’, except we call it, ‘date day’.

Today, we decided on Mel Gibson’s pub on the mountain for our weekly romantic assignation.

We’d just hiked for an hour down to a waterfall and back and we were both starving to death.

I sat down with my piccolo of champagne in peckish anticipation and excitedly ordered a smoked chicken salad. I normally don’t eat chicken (or any meat, except fish) but I’ve had the flu for the last four weeks and thought some iron might be good for me.

When the waiter eventually placed my plate down in front of me, I scrutinised it with bleak suspicion.

I prudently picked around the plate with my fork, like a surgeon inspecting an inflamed intestine for obstructive, malignant tumours.

“What’s wrong, Pinky?” asked Scotto, ravenously slicing his medium rare rump with a razor-sharp steak knife and licking his lips.

“The chicken is pink!” I whined. “I don’t trust pink chicken, Scotto. I could get food poisoning.”

“I think it’s just the juice from the red onion,” he reassured me, a bit too casually for my liking to be honest.

I cautiously took a tiny nibble.

“It’s ham!” I shrieked, spitting it back on to my plate.

The people at the next table paused and gaped, forks halfway to their mouths.

The strange flesh had the texture and taste of ham. It even had ham rind on it. I was appalled.

Scotto, examining fake chicken/ham.


If there’s one thing I don’t eat, it is pig.

Why?

1. Pigs have similar DNA to humans. Would you eat a child?

2. When humans burn, they apparently smell like pork cooking. Would you eat a burning child?

3. Pigs are very cute and one day I will have one as a pet. It will be called, Babe or perhaps Wilbur.

4. Pigs have worms.



Scotto, highly frustrated and mildly vexed at this turn of events, miserably carried my meal back up to the kitchen, glancing back at his steak with yearning as it sat, neglected and cooling on his plate.

He returned triumphantly, announcing that the ‘manager’ had it all under control and was sorting it all out.

Within twenty seconds, I spotted the ‘manager’ heading our way, balancing my plate in one hand as he careened through the beer garden, his face a blood red, the shade of a slaughtered pig.

“It’s not ham,” he wheezed triumphantly. “It’s smoked chicken. Apparently it just looks like ham. We can get you something else if you prefer…”

I smiled sweetly. “S’ok,” I simpered. “Thank you very much, sir. Of course it’s chicken, silly me. Sorry to have inconvenienced you.”

I watched him walk back up to the kitchen. No doubt, back to the chef where the two of them would laugh at the stupid woman customer who couldn’t tell the difference between ham and chicken.

“I’m. Not. Fudging. Eating. One. Disgusting. Bite,” I snarled savagely as soon as the alleged ‘manager’ was out of sight.

“Why not?” Scotto queried, chomping on some juicy steak, blood trickling, Viking-like, down his chin.

“Because they probably fudging spat on my fudging meal!” I hissed, pushing the plate away in a hangry fit of temper. “Or they pooped in it more likely.”

“Pinky. They wouldn’t spit or poo in your food or they’d lose their licence,” Scotto half-heartedly cajoled, popping a delectable chip in his gob and smacking his lips.

“Bullshit!” I sulked, pulling all the slices of artificial chicken out of the salad and making a huge pile on the side of the plate, just to make a point.



“Mind you,” I conceded, “they probably wouldn’t have had time to squeeze out a poo. It’s probably just spit and phlegm.”
I sat there, eating nothing, mouth dribbling copiously as I watched Scotto sop up his steak juice with crunchy chips and slurp them into his mouth with rapture.

When the waiter came to collect my uneaten meal I made a point of asking for a ‘chicken bag’ not a doggy bag.

“I’m going to feed it ALL to my chickens,” I announced meaningfully, my gimlet eye fixed on the poor youth, in spiteful retribution for my failed date-day.

I hoped the waiter would notice that I’d eaten nothing of the fake chicken food and show the fudging ‘chef ‘what I thought of his fudging crap cooking, but he was too busy laughing at my request of a ‘chicken bag’ and started telling me stories about his own chickens.

So guys, we won’t be going back to Mel Gibson’s pub ever. Sorry Mel, but your chef doesn’t know his livestock.

My cannibal chickens enjoyed eating the fake chicken/pig, and I’m still very hangry.

Scotto probably has indigestion from his steak which probably serves him right. I don’t know if he does or not. I’m too cranky with him to ask because, in some obscure small way, I’m sure it’s all his fault.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

One Smart Fellow, He Felt Smart.



The line in the title of this post is the beginning of a tongue twister the PE instructors taught our classes on school camp last week at Lake Moggelydoogelly. I was there for two nights and three days with my buddy teacher and the two school principals.

There were expert instructors who ran our activities over the three days and two nights and they, in their youthful exuberance, heightened my self-awareness, that I have indeed developed into an elderly, decrepit and whinging old crone.

“What fresh hell is this?” I’d mutter to myself, grimacing in deep suspicion at the commencement of every new physical challenge.

There was the three and half hour hike over a rocky hill and up to the top of a lofty, snake infested gorge.



 There was the three hour canoeing expedition where (with aching arms) I steered two frightened little boys clad in life jackets on an inexorable journey across an icy and sinister lake. 


There was the two hour mountain biking activity where I may have shouted an expletive within range of several children’s earshot as I death-defyingly plummeted down a jagged slope towards a broad eucalyptus trunk, legs flailing and grasping desperately for the elusive brake.

After each daring trial, my principal would spot me limping piteously up the path and ask chirpily, “Did you have a good time, Pinky?” To which I would stare at him through bloodshot eyes and reply tersely, “No. Not really. Not at all actually, but thanks for asking.”

I sat beside him tugging off my runner one morning, “I think there’s something biting my toe,” I complained bitterly. “But don’t worry about it, it’s probably just a red-back spider.”
I turned out to be just some sock cotton wound tightly around my toe.

Then there was the whole ‘feeding the children thing’ three times a day.

One little student refused to eat anything except bread and cake for three days. “Oh well,” commented my buddy. “He will probably have trouble going to the toilet after this. Not that any of us here will be going to the toilet while we’re here, of course.” She added pointedly.

I turned to stare at her with a renewed sense of admiration.

She too, was a ‘never poo away from home’ girl.

All my colleagues back in Townsville teased me no end because I could never stay on girl’s weekends for more than one night and here I was finally buddied up with a like-minded poo girl. Unless, of course, she was merely attempting to warn me off pooping in our shared toilet for the duration of the camp.

I think the worst thing was that I was sick. I had a relapse of the flu I’d had a couple of weeks ago and woke up every morning with a deep, rattling cough and a drag queen voice.

Not that there was much sleep to be had what with homesick children, children with weak, but urgent bladders and squabbling, rambunctious possums and eerie, werewolf-like howls emanating from the surrounding bushland.

I tried to pretend I was on that show, Survivor and at night I would pretend I was in rehab.

It would have been so much more manageable with a cheeky red wine around the bonfire every night.

But it’s all part of being a teacher. The kids loved every second of the camp and even though every muscle in my body is screaming and after the bike riding I’m walking like a King’s Cross hooker, I managed to get through it.

Two smart fellows, they felt smart.

Three smart fellows, they all felt smart.

And they all smelt fart together.

Damn, I’ll never get it right.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

The Horn Birds



To pass time on my 75 minute commute to work (other than gasping at the gloriously, bucolic scenery at every turn), I’ve been listening to audio books. I’ve exhausted the entire works of Bill Bryson and, filled to the eye sockets with history and science, I thought I’d switch to fiction.

I’ve been meaning to read The Thorn Birds for the last thirty years and despite having it on my bookshelf, never got round to it. It seemed a bit thick and small-printed for an intellectual pygmy such as myself.

At the first ten minutes of the audio version, I was hypnotised. 

It’s rivetting. 

I was vaguely aware the plot had something to do with a priest and an illicit affair because I saw previews of the mini-series but never fancied the gaunt and slightly effeminate Richard Chamberlain so didn’t bother watching it.

Clearly one of the females in the book gets raunchy with the priest and I’m still unsure which one at this stage.

I began investigating the matter on Wikipedia but quickly snapped the computer closed with a great deal of willpower and restraint before I could spoil the story for myself.

I asked one of my colleagues, Deb, if there were any ‘passion scenes’ in the novel.

She raised one eyebrow at me and an enigmatic smile passed her lips. “Yes, Pinky, there are some ‘passion scenes’ in it, I suppose,” then she seemed to go off in a bit of a reverie, staring into the distance, her cheeks glowing with a rosy hue.

I must add that Deb told me she reads the book every six weeks or so.

The reason I asked her though, is that I tend to drive with my audio turned up so high it would make most people’s eardrums bleed out. Scotto can hear me coming from five kilometres down the road. Whilst reading Bill Bryson’s ‘Down Under’, people at traffic lights were laughing along with me at the jokes.

There are at least three sets of roadworks on my journey to work where I’m mandated to pull over beside a jaded, high-vis-jacket-wearing traffic controller. I’d hate to be sitting in my car, wantonly enjoying a particularly titillating, bodice-ripping scene whilst a burly, bearded traffic controller stares at me curiously through my windscreen.

It would be … awkward.

There was one scene in the book where the priest was dancing around naked in the rain and the word ‘flaccid’ was mentioned but that’s as bawdy as it’s been so far which is disappointing. And also the narrator is American so they pronounce 'flaccid' in a very non-sexy manner. She said it like, 'flak-sid'. That's not how it's pronounced is it? I've never been 'flaccid' so it's never been important before. Not that I think being 'flaccid' is in the slightest a sexy thing... but, anyway I seem to be getting off topic.

The truth is, I’m really looking forward to the passion scenes more than I should be but I might have to get some ear plugs to protect the traffic controllers and random livestock dotting the fields.



Have you read the Thorn Birds and did you love it?

P.S. Just to ease your mind I looked it up and you can pronounce 'flaccid' both ways.


ˈflasɪd,ˈflaksɪd/
adjective
  1. (of part of the body) soft and hanging loosely or limply, especially so as to look or feel unpleasant.


Who knew?

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Advice to my Daughter on her 21st Birthday



#1 Don’t be like your mother

Last Friday it was Grandparents’ Day at school. Grandparents are honoured with a special assembly and get to visit the classrooms where each grandchild has fashioned a little gift depending on the whims, fancies and creative prowess of the classroom teacher.

We grade four teachers had decided on cardboard teapots which the students would laboriously, but lovingly, colour in and cut out. It was up to me to merely purchase the teabags to plop into the completed articles.

Five minutes after the kids had left for the day on Thursday, I poked my head into my buddy teacher’s classroom. There were beautifully decorated teapots littering the desks and it suddenly hit me like a metre ruler to the face that I had failed to remember to get my kids to do their teapots.

“Please tell me Grandparent’s Day isn’t tomorrow!” I screeched desperately to my buddy.

She just looked confused for a moment, doubting herself, so strong was my panicked conviction that she’d been the one to get the date wrong, not me.

So I lugged home the stencilled sheets and a handful of colouring pencils and that evening I fastidiously cut out the fiddly things while Scotto sat, tongue sticking out the side of his mouth, happily colouring in like an eight year old.

“These pencils aren’t very good, Pinky! They keep breaking and I need more pretty colours!” he complained, going off in search of my eye liner sharpener.

He was very slow. I think he was having trouble staying in the lines. I fought back an urge to rap him over the knuckles.

In the end I told him to stop colouring because it was taking too long and I found a Better Homes and Gardens magazine and pasted flowers and cakes all over the teapots instead.

I managed to get them all finished and the students presented them to their grandparents with an air of unwarranted pride.

My beautiful daughter turns 21 today. She is in her third year of an education degree and in about 12 months, she will be a primary teacher.

Imagine how proud that makes me feel.

Hopefully, she will more aware of her surroundings than I am.

I have no other advice for her because… well… she’s perfect.



Happy birthday gorgeous Tweetie-Bird xxx



Saturday, August 12, 2017

Facebook Misunderstandings



Sometimes I feel guilty about my Facebook posts and the things I inflict on my friends; relentless photos of my spoiled, hate-filled Chihuahua, obscure and irrelevant observations on the meaning of life and the occasional, tipsy, angry rant at the government.

Last week I wrote an unintelligible comment about me suffering the ill effects of a head cold accompanied by a random photo of a decidedly sick, but arbitrary chicken I’d sourced from Google.

Everyone thought it was my chicken who was sick so I received no sympathy but lots of lovely messages directed towards the unidentified chicken.

I was a bit upset about that… but I brought it on myself, I suppose.

The truth is that one of my chickens is actually mortally sick now. He’s been quite off for about six months and I’ve been researching the symptoms on the Internet. 

He’s stumbling around like me on a Saturday night after a long lunch with Scotto and yesterday he performed three, very feathery, dramatic forward rolls and then couldn’t get up again… just like me on a Saturday night after a long lunch with Scotto.

It was very upsetting to witness.

Today, in a last ditch effort to reclaim an innocent and virtuous, galline life, Scotto and I headed down to Uncle Tom’s Chicken Establishment in order to acquire some chicken antibiotics.

“Is that the same sickly rooster you asked me about months ago?” asked the incredulous lady at Uncle Tom’s.

She was probably wondering why we haven’t taken an axe to it.

“I think he might have an ear infection,” I stammered nervously. “I’ve looked it up on all the chicken forums.”

She looked at me with a sense of benevolence and leaned in confidingly. “You know he might just be a special needs rooster,” she whispered. "Inbreeding is a common thing around these parts," she added supportively.

“No!” I barely stopped myself from shouting at her. “He’s not special needs! He just has an ear infection!”

So anyway, tonight he is locked in the cat cage with the (expensive) antibiotics fizzing malevolently away in his water supply and I’m expecting a miraculous recovery by tomorrow.

If not… (fx) sound of axe being sharpened.


Thursday, August 3, 2017

I'm Not Judging...

It's not my foot but it could be...


Scotto and I were standing in the queue at Aldi on Saturday, when I suddenly noticed a guy in front of us wearing a Pink Floyd t-shirt, circa 2005.

‘Cool,’ I thought (even though I would never say the word ‘cool’ out loud because it’s 2017 not 1967 anymore). 

Scotto and I recently had an argument because he kept saying ‘cool and I became irritable with him and in defence, he accused me of saying ‘True Dat’ which apparently annoyed him quite a bit and we promised never to say either vapid phrase again in each other’s presence. We made passionate make-up love after that argument. No we didn’t. We may have done a fist- bump to celebrate, I can’t recall.

Suddenly I noticed the Pink Floyd gentleman’s son was sporting one of those geometric haircuts; his hair appeared to be sliding off his head it was so triangularly cut. I couldn’t help staring. I don’t care about kids with startlingly geometric haircuts but I do wonder about the point of them and if the hairdressers that can still do them are becoming a rarity because they are all either retired or dead because they spent their heyday in the 1970s taking drugs and having parties with Vidal Sassoon at Club 54. Apparently some people think angular hairdos are still fashionable. Good for them.

Anyway, for some obscure reason I glanced down at this man’s feet and noticed he was not wearing shoes.

That’s okay, I mused serenely. Jesus Christ, our very own redeemer, went around the Middle East on those dusty, stone-bruising, possibly leprosy-ridden roads, sans shoes. 

Besides, we were only at Aldi... and it was Nerang after all, where pretty much anything goes. Gah, people in Nerang wear t-shirts that say things like…


Remember that woman I spotted in Nerang with a t-shirt that said, “Kill All Pedofiles” (sic).

I don’t negatively evaluate people who walk around the shops barefoot, though. Who am I to judge with my deformed left toenail and my inferior, cheap, bargain-basement footwear from Shoe Barn?

My left toenail is a particular disgrace, frankly.

I have to keep a scrupulous eye on the feral thing, let me tell you. It spends most of its leisure time burrowing up through the top of the upper segment of my shoe. Every closed-in pair of shoes I own has a hole in the left toe. I’ve had three pairs of shoes patched professionally in the last three months because my toenail has wormed its way up through the tough leather exterior of my boot/sandal/shoe.

“Mmmm,” the cobbler chuckles as he peruses my shoes with a certain bewildered amusement, “it looks like someone might have a toenail like a hacksaw, huh love?”

But, I did notice this man’s big toenails were about three centimetres long and curling over like talons.

Clearly, he had the same problem as I have and he’s just given up the ghost.

Weary of lugging his toenail-pierced boots into the shoe-repairer business people, he has just decided to fuck shoes off altogether.

Good for him I say.

If I didn’t have a job that required me to wear shoes, I’d do the same.

I wonder if there are any jobs going for a new Messiah, or even a mere disciple? Or even a job in Nerang?

*No offence to people who live in Nerang. I'm sure you're lovely.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Husbands and Bunnings. Part 117.




I looked out on my chook yard earlier this week at twilight and admired the string of solar lights strung along the fence.

“They look quite nice,” I commented to Scotto in a vague, half-hearted manner.

And they did. They were a subtle and delicate, ornamental addition to our idyllic little garden.

Scotto must have really cherished the uncommon praise because the very next night, after I arrived home from work, he dragged me to the window and gestured out to the yard with the type of expectant, hopeful look on his face that invited gushing admiration.

Does not show what it actually looks like!


Festooned with a plethora of glittering lights rivalling Clark Griswold’s elaborate and decorative creation in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, my chook yard glowed like Kiev after the Chernobyl meltdown. Chicken Kiev.

“Was there a sale on at Bunnings?” I asked in astonished wonder. “Do you think the neighbours might complain?”

Scotto grinned and shrugged.

“Oh well,” I sighed. “As long as the chickens don’t mind sleeping in downtown Las Vegas every night. And as long as we don’t have a Jumbo Jet land in our backyard because the pilot mistakes it for the Coolangatta airport runway, it should be alright.”

Scotto loves colourful lights. Don’t get me wrong, so do I, but clearly my husband is secretly harbouring a desire to live in Santa’s workshop.

“Wait until Christmas!” he enthused, his eyes taking in the display with rapture. “You should see what I’ve planned for the front yard!”

Since the installation of this spectacular light exhibition, I’ve noticed a lot of strange looking and various shaped poops in the garden. I’m imagining all the tiny rainforest critters are emerging from the leafy foliage at night and converging on our backyard for Mardi gras time.

No wonder the dogs are so restless at night.

I can just picture all the little bandicoots, koalas and possums frolicking around, getting high on bottle brush and terrorising the wild eyed chooks every night.

At least they’re solar lights and don’t use electricity, I suppose.

Even so, some people should not be allowed to go to Bunnings without a responsible carer.








Saturday, July 15, 2017

The Trouble with Being a Unisexual


Unisex gloves and sunglasses


Now that I’m back at school, Scotto feeds all the animals every evening (except for the cat, who swipes me on the ankle with her venomous claws as I’m juggling with my thermos, lunch and laptop on the way to my car every morning. It’s her way of gently reminding me just who is in charge of the Whiskers bag at the front door).


I usually arrive home as the sun is going down and the cruel and bitter mountain wind starts up and I shout to Scotto (who is hunkered in the garden cleaning up chicken shit) from the back door, not wanting to venture out in case of frost bite, hypothermia and frozen corneas.


One evening last week I blinked when I spied what seemed to be one of the swamp people in my backyard.


It was Scotto, who feels the cold quite badly, I must add.



“You aren’t going to wear that thing out in public ever, are you darling?” I gasped, trails of frost emanating from my iced up mouth.


“No,” Scotto replied nervously, as if I’d caught him out wearing my high heels and suspender belt. “I bought it for chicken feeding time.” *

“It’s just that you look like you’ve just stepped out of a movie about illegal whiskey manufacturing in the Ozarks,” I continued, my teeth chattering violently and breaking off in small pieces in my mouth. “The only thing missing is a banjo and a possum skin over your shoulder.”


“It’s cold,” he wailed. “Did you accidentally take my gloves to work today?” he said suddenly, shivering, hands in pockets and looking a bit accusatory.

I don’t blame him for immediately suspecting me, after all I had taken his sunglasses to work on a previous occasion. I don’t know how I didn’t realise because they’re quite a strong prescription. I think I merely assumed I was having a stroke, had a case of diabetes or the windscreen was dirty.



I guiltily stared into the distant houses with their chimney smoke spiralling towards the overcast sky and vaguely remembered picking up a pair of leather gloves and putting them in my glove box as I left that morning. It had been the first time I’ve ever put gloves in a glove box and I recalled how amazed I’d been at the revelation that a glove box was designed to house gloves and that’s why it’s called a glove box.



“Sorry,” I said. “I thought they were my gloves.”

I hate wearing gloves even though my hands turn white and useless when it’s cold and I’d just picked up a pair of these at the IGA on my way home.

If you turn your phone/laptop around you will be able to read this


I was excited that someone finally had the common sense to invent air-activated hand warmers you can keep in your pockets. How lovely and thoughtful.


I fished into my pockets and pulled out the unopened packet. “Look what I found at the IGA!” I dangled them in front of Scotto’s dubious face, in an attempt to appease his anger at me for swiping his gloves.


“Did you buy those for me, Pinky?” asked Scotto, his face relaxing in instant clemency and a little smile beginning around his lips.


“No,” I replied tartly. “They’re for me, silly.”

Later on, I scrutinised the packet and there are several alarming warnings about the hand warmers regarding allergies, poisonous lead residues and accidental swallowing, so I’ve decided to gift them to Scotto after all.

He can be my experimental guinea pig.

He was extremely grateful when I gave them to him.


I think I am forgiven for the glove thing.

* Poetic licence. I haven't owned a suspender belt for at least two and a half years so get your mind out of the gutter.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Holidays are Over Fudge It!


My two weeks of holiday is over.

I hosted my lunch with the girls from work who all drove the one hour and fifteen minute trip up the mountain. I decided to be clever and order some chicken and salad platters from our local deli instead of doing any actual cooking because that is how I roll.
Scotto was commissioned to go and pick up the pre-ordered platters for me whilst I nervously sprayed the toilet with Glen 20 and wiped dust from the skirting boards.

When he walked in, five minutes before the girls were expected, with the said platters, I began to dribble in a fit of apoplexy.

“What the FUDGE are THEY?” I screamed. “Platters for fudging ants?”

Honestly, they were pathetically minute. They wouldn't have fed fourteen pygmies let alone fourteen teachers with hearty school holiday appetites.

So poor Scotto had to drive back up the top of the mountain and get more chicken and salad.

Lucky I had plenty of champagne. If there’s one thing I’ve learned in life it’s that you basically can’t trust any bastard. Especially delicatessen bastards.

My luncheon girls



So then I had my trip to Townsville to catch up with my kids.

That was really lovely. I won’t mention the fact that I had no sleep the first night because the ‘person’ I shared a room with snored in what I would describe as a fudging DEATH RATTLE all night. At 4:00 am, in desperate frustration, I even tried to video the earsplitting sound on my phone but I was too delirious to be able to get it to work.

I was waiting for her to wake up the next morning with a wild eyed, manic, lack of sleep hysteria expression on my face.

“I have to tell you something,” I hissed like Linda Blair in the Exorcist and wringing my hands in a demonic fashion.

“What?” asked my oblivious companion shaking out her hair in a casual manner, clearly refreshed and chipper.

“YOU SNORE!” I whistled through grinding teeth. “YOU SNORE REALLY BLOODY LOUD!”

My companion (who I can’t name because she would disinherit me) denied any part in my dearth of somnambulism and said I was imagining it and that she didn’t snore and that I was basically making it all up and how dare I accuse her of snoring.

Family Reunion

I had a lovely night with the family though and we celebrated our new found Scandinavian heritage which we didn't know about until my DNA results came through.
Recent photo with my apparent relatives (who don't snore).


Then I came home to the mountain and celebrated a reunion with my friend Kyles, the music teacher, and we had such a good time that we stayed up drinking until 12:45 because she thought the time was 8:45 because she wasn’t looking at her watch properly and she got the small hands mixed up with the big hands and we all had horrible hangovers the next day.

Kyles and her husband and us.


Then I went to Sydney Town with my eldest son who I adore with all my heart and we walked and talked and went to shows and the beach and it was all wonderful.



Finally, I had lunch with my very handsome husband and now the holidays are over and I haven’t done any planning for school. At all.


Oh well. Fudge it.

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Ancestry DNA Surprises!


                                                                                              Image Credit
                             By Lestat (Jan Mehlich) - Own work, CC BY-SA 2.5, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1048337



The news is in my friends.


My Ancestry DNA results arrived yesterday and as I was at a reunion with my family yesterday, it was the perfect time for the big reveal.


“I’m 19% Polish which means you must all have Polish in you too!” I screamed whilst miming playing a piano accordion.

So ecstatic at the exotic heritage revelation, last night we all danced around doing the polka, eating sausage and generally celebrating the fact that I had 19% Polish DNA (which was a bloody surprise let me tell you). 

“Hey Pilchowski!” someone would call out in a Bronx accent. “Pass the sausage, Werkonski!” someone would holler amongst various other names that end in ‘ski’ which were thrown back and forward with gusto all night. This went on incessantly as we told Polish jokes, shared war stories about the German Invasion in 1939 as if we had actually been there and basically celebrated the Fatherland in joyous patriotism.

The unfortunate thing was that I had been forced to read the results of my DNA test on my phone as my laptop carked it just before I left to go on holidays and I read the wrong results because the stupid phone screen is so small. This morning, however, I realised I’d clicked the wrong button and I have NO Polish DNA whatsoever.

Nary a scrap.

I have 19% Western European DNA, which is the Belgium/France/German/Swiss combination and nothing at all Polish in me, apparently.

Oh well. It was nice being a one fifth Pole for one night anyway.

So, as I predicted, I am 43% Great Britain, 21% Irish and delightfully 13% Scandinavian (which explains why I seem to have turned into a blonde over the last six months and it’s nothing to do with Stefan Hairdressing salon visits. It’s all natural.

It seems my ancestors liked to hang around Western Europe and not move about very much.

I’ve decided to completely ignore the 43% British component in my DNA but I do like the Irish element. I’m almost a quarter Irish so that means I can celebrate St Patrick’s Day with some authenticity now instead of faking it like all the other drunks.

The Scandinavian bit must be from the Vikings when they raped and pillaged the Celts and Saxons. I’ll have to get one of those little hats with horns and start naming my pets after characters on Vikings instead of Game of Thrones.

The Ancestry DNA people also send you the names of close and distant cousins who have undergone the testing process.

My closest match was my uncle! I haven’t seen or spoken to my uncle for about twenty-five years (no one in the family has) and it shocked me how accurate these tests must be for them to identify us as a very close match. There are over three million profiles and they matched me with my uncle!

Anyway, yah, I’m off to the spa, yah. I’m going to eat some pickled herrings and meatballs and listen to ABBA songs yah!

Top o the morning to you. May the wind always be at your back and may you be at the gates of heaven an hour before the devil knows you’re dead! It’s easy to halve the potato where there’s love.

Fiddle-dee-dee potatoes!


Monday, June 26, 2017

The Sound of Dust Mites



I have twelve ladies coming for lunch tomorrow and have been cleaning my dusty house so that they don't think I'm a filthy pig. 

I picked up some Gumption at the IGA and it inspired me to write a song (as various things occasionally do). 

You have to sing along in your head to the Youtube song at the bottom of the post... k?

Warning: It's very deep. Very.



The Sound of Dust Mites



Hello Gumption my old friend

I’ve come to scrub with you again

In my vision softly cleaning...

Til my fingers are all bleeding

And the vision that is planted in my brain

Has no stains

Around the kit...chen island.



The counter gleamed, I scrubbed alone

My spouse was on the telephone

And my hand joints ached with raw cramp

I squeezed my sponge into the cold and damp

Then my eyes were stung with the splash of some Ajax White

It blurred my sight

So then I swore... with violence

But in the naked light I saw

Ten thousand dust balls, maybe more

Dust balls gathered on the bench top

Dust balls hiding from the duster mop

Dust balls telling tales... that vacuums never share

They’d never dared

Disturb that mound... of dust mites




Fool was I, you surely know

Dust mites like a cancer grows

"Hear my words that I might teach you

You filthy dust I’m going to reach you"

And my sponge... my silent loofah,  fell

And mopped up… all that mound of dust mites.




And then Pinky bowed and prayed

To the Gumption, God had made

But the label flashed its warning

In the words I saw were forming

And the words said, the stains from the dust are coated on the kitchen walls

And in the halls


They whispered… those mounds of dust mites.